Countless things can go wrong in travel, and even in life. There is no way to stop mistakes from being made and terrible situations from arising; there is, however, a way to control your own response to these mistakes and situations. Tom Butler, a great friend of Hayden’s, has spent many years of travel solving problems, and has a lot of advice to give.
Tom is not only a friend of Hayden’s, but also a friend, bus driver, and groupie to Hayden’s band. The two of them discuss living a life of travel, what it means to settle down, and how to incorporate travel into your everyday life. Hayden was inspired by Tom’s travels, and the two of them talk about their inspirations and origins as travelers. Tom offers advice to those who do not have confidence in their own ability to travel.
Tom’s story takes place in Nepal, and is titled “Without a Paddle.” In it, Tom backpacks through Nepal to Kathmandu, goes on a rafting tour, and befriends his fellow travels and a puppy named Bob. However, Tom also had a terrible time with his borrowed wetsuit when he had to wait six hours and climb a hill before he could use a bathroom. The trip to Nepal taught Tom what he believes is the epitome of travel. For him, travel is not what you think is going to happen, or how you act with who you meet - sometimes, you are just a subject of the environment around you, and you just have to roll with it and have the right attitude, and you will have a positive experience.
Dealing with bad things that happen, in travel as well as in life, is not always easy. Rolling with the punches and keeping a positive attitude, however, can get you anywhere.
Beliefs and rhythm are the common threads that connect people all over the world, from Utah to Chichen Itza, from the ancient Mayans to the modern Americas. Marissa Brown, a Utah, United States native who studies music and enjoys world percussion, comes to Hayden to share the stories that taught her how similar humans of different cultures and times really are.
Hayden and Marissa discuss world percussion and the beats that cultures bring to the worldwide table of rhythm. They toy with starting a band, but move on to talking about how music fits in with travel in Marissa’s life. She learned a while ago that the best way for her to find herself was to lose herself, just for a little while. Marissa discusses the feelings brought to her by visiting ancient sites, how those feelings changed her afterwards, and the levels of happiness she experienced at the time.
The not-so-hidden gem of this episode is titled “The Mystical Mayans” by Marissa; in it, she talks about the time she visited the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, to the heavily-populated site called Chichen Itza, an ancient Mayan city, which had a huge temple. She went on a tour with a local who gave her a personal perspective on the area, his home. She also went to Ek’ Balam, a true hidden gem, and climbed a thousand steps to the top of an ancient ruin.
While Marissa was in Mexico, she saw temple sites, marriage altars, baptismal fonts, and realized that these people, who lived so far away from Jerusalem, believed such similar things to the people there, and she saw the people living in Mexico, and she learned that people all over the world weren’t so different from one another. Beliefs and rhythms connected them, and Marissa could feel a new beat starting in her heart.
Solitude, silence, and peace are craved by many when they are traveling. However, many others desire companionship instead, wanting someone to share their experiences with. Richard Bruschi has a healthy dose of both, but it was solitude that helped him to truly find himself.
Richard Bruschi is a writer for Sonderers Magazine, which functions on the idea that everyone has a story, no matter how modest their experience is or unexciting their life is. Everybody has a story, everybody has a life, everybody has thoughts, and that is a beautiful thing; Sonderers operates under that belief. Richard is, as described by Hayden, very cerebral in nature, and he and Hayden deep-dive into a variety of subjects throughout the interview, eventually ending up in a rabbit hole of conversation. Richard has done a considerable amount of traveling in his life, from the United States to Italy to Nottingham, and his experiences have impacted him greatly. Richard believes that there are opportunities everywhere if you just know where to look and how to prioritize. “Money is always out there to be made and caught,” Richard says, roughly paraphrasing Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, “but experiences - once you miss them, you’re not sure you can have them again.”
Richard’s adventure, titled “Finding Myself,” takes place in Alaska. While Richard was backpacking in Resurrection Bay, Alaska, in an effort to be alone in nature for as long as possible, he cautiously realized a great deal about himself. What he found out about himself also led him to realizing how well he and his brother really knew each other. In this, Richard realized that finding himself also involved finding someone else along the way.
Richard believes that he is a person first, and he is everything else second. Traveling and focusing on one worry at a time while you do it can really simplify your life and help you discover who you truly are as a person. Solitude can come in handy when the only person you really need to be alone with is yourself.